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Friday round-up

On Wednesday the Supreme Court heard oral argument in Artis v. District of Columbia, which involves the effect of a tolling provision in the federal supplemental-jurisdiction statute on litigants who want to pursue state-court claims after related federal claims have been dismissed. Robert Yablon has this blog’s argument analysis.

At The National Law Journal (subscription or registration required), Tony Mauro reports that “[i]n an extremely rare media interview Wednesday night, U.S. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas waved off suggestions that his new colleague Neil Gorsuch is ‘ruffling feathers’ with other justices.” Additional coverage of Thomas’ remarks comes from Debra Cassens Weiss at the ABA Journal, who reports that Thomas debunked rumors “that Gorsuch’s demeanor is irking some colleagues.”

At Constitution Daily, Scott Bomboy calls Masterpiece Cakeshop v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission, which asks whether the First Amendment bars Colorado from requiring a baker to create a cake for a same-sex wedding, “a significant case that ‘takes the cake’ literally, as the issues of religious expression and same-sex civil rights converge in a lawsuit first filed in 2012.” At USA Today, Richard Wolf reports that “[o]ver the past two months, the high court has been flooded with nearly 100 legal briefs [in the case], equally divided between the two sides, that raise lofty legal arguments about free speech and religious liberty, equal rights and anti-discrimination laws,” and provides highlights of some of the submissions.


  • At Bloomberg BNA, Jordan Rubin reports that “[t]he fates of two death row inmates before the U.S. Supreme Court may be tough to divine, given that swing-justice Anthony Kennedy mostly kept to himself during back-to-back oral arguments” this week in Ayestas v. Davis and Wilson v. Sellers.
  • In an op-ed for The Wall Street Journal, Justice Stephen Breyer salutes the late William Coleman Jr., “a ‘man for all seasons’” who “[u]se[d] what is best about America, its commitment to equal justice under law, to end what was worst about America, its blatant racial discrimination.”
  • In an op-ed for The Washington Post, Laurence Tribe argues that the Supreme Court should review Hidalgo v. Arizona, a case challenging Arizona’s death-penalty scheme and the death penalty nationwide, and “should acknowledge that capital punishment — in Arizona and everywhere else — violates human dignity and constitutes cruel and unusual punishment,” or, “[a]t the very least, it should enforce the requirement that the death penalty be available only in the rarest of circumstances.”
  • At Pacific Standard, Rebecca Buckwalter-Poza wonders whether the newest Supreme Court justice, Neil Gorsuch, “is using the Court as a platform to launch his political career.”
  • The Heritage Foundation’s Scotus 101 podcast features discussions of “the justices’ field trip to Harvard and courts joining the resistance.”

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Recommended Citation: Edith Roberts, Friday round-up, SCOTUSblog (Nov. 3, 2017, 7:23 AM),